The popularity of ‘selfie’ pictures is increasing the number of head lice infestations among young people, a nit treatment professional has claimed.
"Head lice are spread through head-to-head contact. Lice don’t jump or fly, so you actually have to touch heads," stated Marcy McQuillan of Nitless Noggins.
"Every teen I’ve treated, I ask about selfies, and they admit that they are taking them every day."
Despite McQuillan’s claims, some industry experts are unconvinced.
“This is a marketing ploy, pure and simple,” Dr. Richard J. Pollack, a professor at the Harvard School of Public Health who also operates the IndentifyUS pest identification business, told NBC News.
“Wherever these louse salons open a new branch, there always seems to be an epidemic. It’s good for business.”
The popularity of selfies is clear, with the word joining the Oxford English Dictionary at the end of 2013.
A recent survey found that nearly a fifth of British men take part in the self-snapping habit, while a tenth of women similarly photograph themselves.
Image of group selfie courtesy of Shutterstock.co.uk